Garden state of mind

I’m naturally attracted to flowers, even though I’m super-sensitive to fragrances and other strong (mostly artificial) smells.

Flowers of all kinds, really — I don’t discriminate. My media inventory is sprinkled with flower photo-ops, colorful reminders of nature on the sides of sidewalks and hidden beauties in untamed meadows. I’ve also got a thing for trees, as anyone on my Instagram knows. If I haven’t posted a picture of a flower or a tree in days, you’ll know something’s incredibly wrong with me.

Trees, like flowers, are manifestations of sunlight and soil properties. How simple, and yet how exquisitely beautiful! Perhaps I’m attracted to these beings of light as a soul with SAD’s. Perhaps I keep them close as a reminder — as a promise — of the healing powers found in fresh air and sunlight.

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We are what we surround ourselves with.

This presentation of energy, this law of attraction if you will, comes in our consciousness through many different adages: what you think you become ; surround yourself with positive people ; what you seek is seeking you ; your energy introduces you before you speak.

We’re told to surround ourselves with those who make us happy, to do things that give us pleasure and happiness, to plant the seeds that will make tomorrow a more joyful experience: grow positive thoughts ; it’s all in your mind ; quiet the mind and the soul will speak ; open your eyes and see the beauty. 

But such advice is often frustrating, difficult to put into practice — even more difficult to make into a habit. The same quotes that inspire can often lead to a kind of personal despair: What if the only friends I have are hurting me? What if I am hurting myself? How can I look at my life with happiness, when all I see is injury and hopelessness?

And yet, the sayings are true:

We are what we eat, who we’re with, what we’re doing, what we plan to do.

Just as the flower cannot be anything but sunlight and soil, we cannot be anything but our true selves — no matter how thick the veil of disguise we wear. But unlike the flower, we have the human agency to transform our inner selves by first addressing who we are and what we’re made of.

What are our most obstructive fears, and where do they lie in wait? What are we most afraid to lose? And despite all of this negative energy, perhaps even because of it, what can we really and honestly afford to let go?

I have started living by the notion ‘Let go that which does not serve you’ and taking its teachings quite literally. I have learned to let go of news sources and social mediums and temptations that I realized were just causing me nauseating anxiety. I have let go clothes and memories and people in my life that were lingering far too long, no longer helpful or useful to my own growth. I have learned to let go pain and nervousness, instead exchanging feelings of dread and fear with feelings of joy — a barter system with a balance.

It’s only after the fact that I realize these sometimes silly adages make sense.

So, what do the people and the pictures, the moments and the memories, you keep in your life say about you? What can you learn to let go of? And most importantly, what will you stand to gain? How high will your garden state of mind grow?


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One Comment

  1. Debi & Don Durbin says:

    Hi Bethany,   Just wanted to give you a heads up that I have been having trouble opening your post.  It gives me a security alert and then locks up my computer. Is anyone else you know having the same issues?  Just wanted to let you know so you don’t think I’m just not opening your emails. 😦   HUGS!! Debi

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